Human Rights Day – December 10th

Human Rights Day is observed by the international community every year on December 10th. It commemorates the day the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt, (United States) holding a Declaration of Human Rights © UN PhotoHuman Rights Day dates from 1950, after the Assembly passed resolution 423 (V) inviting all States and interested organizations to adopt December 10th of each year as Human Rights Day.

When the General Assembly adopted the Declaration, it was proclaimed as a “common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations”, towards which individuals and societies should “strive by progressive measures, national and international, to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance”.

The Declaration consists of a preamble and 30 articles that set out a broad range of fundamental human rights and freedoms to which all of us, everywhere around the world, are entitled. It guarantees our rights without distinction of nationality, place of residence, gender, national or ethnic origin, religion, language, or any other status.

The Declaration was drafted by representatives of all regions and legal traditions. It has over time been accepted as a contract between Governments and their peoples. Virtually all States have accepted the Declaration. It has since served as the foundation for an expanding system of human rights protection that today focuses also on vulnerable groups such as persons with disabilities, indigenous peoples and migrants.

Photo: Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt, (United States) holding a Declaration of Human Rights
© UN Photo

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